Over five billion people, nearly two thirds of the world’s population, are without Internet access. Attempts to bridge the gap of this Digital Divide have struggled due to poor infrastructure and an inability to generate greater commerce or quality of life. But new innovations with mobility have made it such that people can receive 3G connectivity in places without electricity. So can global Internet connectivity have the necessary gradual impact on a region’s economy and living conditions in order to see a significant change? How are governments, the commercial sector and non-profits joining hands to contribute to this cause, and how can working on this help solve the impoverished world’s other priorities?
Dr. Jon Gant, Director of the Center for Digital Inclusion, Professor, Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois
Jon Gant is a professor at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he serves as the Director of the Center for Digital Inclusion (CDI). Gant is a national leader in the ... More View all posts
Jon Gant is a professor at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he serves as the Director of the Center for Digital Inclusion (CDI). Gant is a national leader in the areas of digital inclusion and broadband adoption. In the past two years, he has published groundbreaking research in the areas of Internet access and use, including co-authoring the first report to examine broadband adoption among minority communities. Gant recently served as a Director of Urbana-Champaign Big Broadband (UC2B), a $30-million dollar project dedicated to building one of the fastest broadband networks in the country. Jon was appointed to the UC2B board in October 2013. Gant is also an expert in evaluating the social and economic impact of broadband Internet and other ICT investments. He serves as a consultant with ASR Analytics as a research director and member of the academic advisory board for the evaluation of the Department of Commerce, NTIA $4.7 billion Broadband Technology Opportunity Program (BTOP). Under Gant's direction, CDI is helping to incubate new applications that will run on ultra-high speed broadband networks. In 2012, Gant received a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to provide continuing education to library leaders about the ways in which libraries can participate in building the next generation of the Internet. Researchers at CDI are also working on other digital literacy projects funded by the State of Illinois, Partnership for a Connected Illinois, the American Library Association, and IMLS. CDI is one of three research centers at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, which is the top ranked school in the US. In addition to his work on digital inclusion and broadband adoption, Jon is an expert in e-government, geo-spatial information systems, strategic planning and information systems. His research has been funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the Organization for Economic Coordination and Development, the International Telecommunication Union, and the National Science Foundation, among others. Gant received his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the Heinz School at Carnegie Mellon University, where he studied public policy and information management. Less View all posts
John Windhausen Jr., Executive Director, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition
John Windhausen, Jr. is the Executive Director of the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, a diverse coalition of community anchor institutions, broadband companies, foundations (such as the Gates Foundation) and publ... More View all posts
John Windhausen, Jr. is the Executive Director of the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, a diverse coalition of community anchor institutions, broadband companies, foundations (such as the Gates Foundation) and public interest groups. The SHLB (“SHELL-bee”) Coalition advocates for open, affordable, high-capacity broadband services for anchor institutions around the country. Mr. Windhausen also represents a variety of non-profit and commercial organizations through his consulting firm, Telepoly Consulting. In prior years, he served as President of a telecommunications trade association in Washington D.C., as counsel and senior counsel to the United States Senate Commerce Committee working for Senator Hollings (S.C.) and Senator Inouye (HA), and as staff attorney at the FCC. Mr. Windhausen graduated from Yale University and the UCLA School of Law. Less View all posts